Muse in the Morning

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Muse in the Morning

State of the Onion XVIII

Speaking of ethics and morals…we were doing that, yes?…here’s a poem that was written in a most serious mood about an interaction I had with someone who believed that the Bible was the source of all goodness in the world.  But I suppose it doesn’t have to be that precisely directed.  The graphic is my effort at a stylized yin/yang.

Art Link

Not Quite Balanced

Stories to Tell

We both believe a story

(and so do they

and these and those…)

We both have a book

It’s just that you believe

that everyone should

worship your book

word for word

without context

while my book teaches me

that I must create

my own story

based on my principles

my ethical nature

my moral judgment

my basic goodness

as a human being

and laugh at the thought

that one person would seek

to force their thoughts

or beliefs

on another

I’ve read your book

You fear mine

And you claim

that your belief

is stronger?

You jest

I chuckle at your joke


You slay me

–Robyn Elaine Serven

–March 23, 2006

Please join us on the inside to celebrate, venerate, regenerate and/or motivate our muses.

◊  ◊  ◊

Lately the Muse has been ending with

I hope you have something you would like us to see, hear, or read.  You’ll find an appreciative audience, although the responses may appear slowly.  The sun is rising across the land.

Good morning.  And be excellent to one another.

Well, it’s not such a good morning.  In fact, it’s late on a rather bad night, actually.  I’m sorry I’ve been so self-obsessed to not notice that I’ve been wrong about my place in this community.  I’m sorry that I mentioned my life outside of this blog, which I’m apparently supposed to leave at the door, because it is only this place that matters.  All that other stuff is just personal baggage, I’m told.  I apologize to all of you who think I’m a liar and have called me one in the past few days.  As for someone thinking I’m on a power trip, I haven’t got a clue how you think changing sex is done for power trip purposes, but I’ll apologize for that as well, even if I don’t understand it.  After all, other people probably know better than me what my motivations are.  Clearly I’m just self-deceived by my own self-obsessed observations and should have kept my damned mouth shut so that everybody else’s world would not be tainted with my perceptions.  And I’m sorry that I pointed out that it just isn’t true that “We are one” and that no amount of pretending is going to make it so.

I should have just played the happy clown.

So one more time, I’m taking the hint that I’ve overstayed my welcome and it’s time for me to leave.  I appreciate those who have been supportive.  I’d like to say that’s more of you than have not been, but that would indeed be a lie.  Even some of the people I did think were friends apparently can only extend that so far and no further.

I know I am supposed to be strong and brave and above all this crap.  But I’m not.  Words hurt.  Having my words so rapidly dismissed that they didn’t even appear to be read hurts.  And making my essay from yesterday a discussion about me hurts, because that was not why it was written.  And if I can’t get that point across to you, I don’t belong here.

A few days from now, maybe I’ll find something else to do.  It feels strange to not have a deadline anymore.

I should probably have adhered to the wisdom:  

Don’t leave them laughing.  Just leave.

But after nearly a year here, I did want to say goodbye.  And probably shed some tears.

Not quite balanced indeed.  But I will keep searching.


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  1. “wish you wouldn’t” is probably meaningless right now the way people automatically pass one another in the hall at work and murmur “how are you ” and the recipient wonders

    (why did he/she say that they don’t really want to know how I am) and so on.

    The community will be diminished by your absence

    At the same time if it causes you that much pain well …

    I do think you belong here. And I suspect many others would echo my sentiments.

  2. …I seem to have no clue what this is about, which I recognize doesn’t mean that I’m not a part of the cause.  To whatever extent that I am, I would like to say that I deeply sorry if I, by any action or lack of action on my part, hurt you.  While you and I certainly have had moments of disagreement (most memorably to me on economic matters), I never intended to convey any dislike.

    I hope that your commitment to leaving proves no more lasting than mine was.  You are always most welcome in any conversation I am having, here or anyplace else on the internets.  And no matter what you do, here or anywhere, I wish you all of the best.


  3. ill miss you, robyn.  

    ill admit to feeling uncomfortable about jumping in to a discussion that was, apparently, ongoing in my absence.  so if you felt the lack of MY support, i truly am sorry.  i left a separate comment, responded to a reply, and receiving no further response, left the conversation.  i saw jumping into others’ threads, at that time, as unnecessarily and unproductively inflammatory, seeing as i wasnt up to speed on all the background.  

    i really almost jumped in yesterday when the words ‘lifestyle choice’ were being thrown about, as they are words im particularly sensitive to….but thought better of it because, at that point, i think things had devolved well past my ability to provide anything of value.

    i wish you would stay.  beyond that, i wish you happiness and peace in your further endeavors.

    merry part, and, hopefully, merry meet again.

    • kj on June 30, 2008 at 14:31

    I so sorry I failed to do more, better, sooner and with more style and grace to make the point that words hurt, especially in this medium that is mostly all words on screen.  I don’t know how to leave my life and experiences outside this blog at the door either, and I thought we were all more than just this community.

    I failed.  Again.  But I’m not sorry I tried with all I had at the time.  There will be another time and you are a worthy Teacher.

    I would very much like to get in touch with you off-line, if possible.  OTB set up an email account for me that I don’t use, but know how to access.  kj at docudharma dot com.  Please email that account.  I very much want to stay in touch with you and find where you write.

    And damn it, community!   Damn it!

    • kj on June 30, 2008 at 14:34

    Get over yourselves and your theories and engage, damn it!  This isn’t a game.  

  4. I’m saddened that you are going.

    I’m wondering if there was anything I could have done that would have prevented such a colossal train wreck.

    • scribe on June 30, 2008 at 15:05

    I don’t consider myself part of any online community anymore, and none of what’s happened here is really any of my damned business, and I well know it. BUT I have this very strong, intuitive urge to say these words to you, Robyn,(and to whoever else?)  I don’t know what they may or may not mean to you.. and maybe they will just end up pissing you off, but I’ll take that risk.

    It’s time to change the pattern. The old one has served it’s purpose well and is no longer needed. Let go of the leaving: it is futile to keep searching for what has already been found.    

    • kj on June 30, 2008 at 15:14

    It’s all contained

    in the cry of the gull

    our coming

    our presence

    our fall.


  5. except that I wanted to say that over the last few days I’ve realized that there have been many times you’ve said things that I dismissed.

    But many times lately, those very words have been things I’m saying to myself.

    Like, “How can I possibly say what I see and feel in a way that might help people understand? Why is it that my words seem to be failing so miserably?”

    Other people, like the ones I quoted in my essay yesterday on progressives and racism, have been able to communicate these thoughts and ideas to me in ways that got through – at least to me. But I have been unable to channel any of that much further.

    I know there are those who think that’s because what we’re trying to communicate is wrong somehow. But I know in my heart of hearts that its not.

    All I can say, for what its worth, is that I’ll keep trying…somewhere, somehow.

  6. Utsukushii kereba sore de ii Ishikawa Chiaki

    Lady Elwin’s Translation

    As long as its beautiful, its fine

    ~the countless flowers enveloped in light

    gaze at tomorrow with eyes free of doubt~

    everyone wishes for me to be pure, but

    waiting in the sky that’s about to be worn out

    picking flowers to make them their own

    they’re all just sinful people

    I stopped making promises with the future

    because even if I try to run far away from pain

    look, the chill wind is shaking my hair

    where should I search for the answer?

    even if I take a break from this selfish destiny

    I feel as if somewhere I was saved

    as if one day even this past that can’t be remade

    can be put away in a small box

    the countless flowers enveloped in light

    gaze at tomorrow with eyes free of doubt

    the white bell that quietly overlooks us

    as long as it’s beautiful, it’s fine

    is this the dream’s continuation?

    is this a dream I won’t awaken from?

    I murmured countless times

    I stopped making promises with the future

    because even if I try to run far away from pain

    look, the chill wind is shaking my hair

    where should I search for the answer?

    … but of course, with translations, YMMV … this is the translation done by the fans of the anime that used this as an opening song:

  7. if you leave under these circumstances, Robyn.

    Like other occasional posters here, I’ve found it difficult to get involved not knowing everything that may have been at work.  That doesn’t mean I don’t care about what’s happening — it only means much of it was over my head.

    If you need to step away, would you consider doing it temporarily and not making a permanent decision now?  But whatever you decide, thank you for all the work you’ve put into this blog.    

    • frosti on June 30, 2008 at 17:43

    1. Don’t leave

    2. don’t leave

    3. Repeat

    Naturally, it is your choice.  Remember, that you and I have survived much worse than this.  If you leave, then you really have given over power in one sense, though in a blog, the ultimate power is to choose whether to write or not.  I recognize that.

    An inclusive community needs different points of view, yours included, or especially yours, since you can explain your point of view so well.

    I think you have set your bar too high.  It is perhaps too exhausting to write every morning, every weekend.  But write here sometimes. Or even often, but maybe not daily. Allow your writing to be a source of renewal, not a duty to educate.

    Let the flames die down, and use the coals to keep you warm.  You have a lot of support.

    • pico on June 30, 2008 at 22:12

    my two cents.

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